Bishop Rachel joined record numbers of visitors at the Royal Three Counties show, with families journeying from across Gloucestershire, Herefordshire, Worcestershire and beyond to celebrate the best of the countryside and enjoy main arena entertainment.
Bishop Rachel, who is the President of the Three Counties Show Agricultural Society for 2023 said, “The Royal Three Counties Show is always a highlight of my calendar, and it has been a delight and privilege to be President this year. From visiting the NFU tent to the Red Devils’ parachute display, plus the fabulous exhibiting of livestock, sheep shearing, and all the many equine events, it was a wonderful weekend. The final awards ceremony with the Young Farmers was a joyful way to end the show.”
Highlights of the day included the IMPS under 18s motorbike stunt team and the Pony Club Mounted Games as well as the weekend’s many prize-winning animals on their lap of honour in the Grand Parade of Livestock.
Head of Shows Jane Edwards said, “This weekend we have seen some of the finest livestock in the country across 32 judging rings, an action-packed Main Arena, a busy Food and Drink Festival supporting producers from the Three Counties and nine equine rings buzzing with activity.
“We are proud to bring together all the people, animals and trades that make the Three Counties such a celebrated area of the UK. Everything from livestock and farm machinery to artisan food and family entertainment is given a well-deserved platform at Royal Three Counties Show and we hope our visitors left each day with a real taste of what the countryside has to offer.
“The show provides an ideal opportunity to learn more about farming, food, the countryside and the environment. The farming community is at the heart of Royal Three Counties Show and hosting discussions about soil health, net zero, regenerative agriculture and diversification helps farmers to network and share expert knowledge to further the industry.”
As President, Bishop Rachel was invited to crown her favourite animal from across the three days of showing as ‘Champion of Champions’. She gave the honour to a Gloucester heifer and calf owned by Craig Phillips. The Gloucester breed is on the Rare Breeds Survival Trust watch list.
She said, “I was delighted to name a Gloucester heifer and calf as my champion of champions on Saturday, with Gloucestershire being the host county for this year. With such an impressive display of livestock at Royal Three Counties Show, including many rare breeds, visitors to the show are able to meet handlers and find out more about the animals, food production and how to ensure these animals will continue to thrive.”
Elsewhere on the Showground, visitors discussed hot topics and rural issues in the all-new Future of Farming Zone where the Theatre featured talks and book signings from special guests Clarkson’s Farm’s Kaleb Cooper, Countryfile presenter and farmer and Adam Henson, JLS member and farmer JB Gill, rugby legend, MasterChef winner and farmer Phil Vickery and industry experts. NFU President, Minette Batters, and DEFRA Minister Trudy Harrison also made an appearance to discuss today’s farming issues.
Families looking for something new could see the action at the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS championships and a full programme of rural pursuits in the Countryside Arena. Alongside sheep shearing competitions and a record number of sheep entries in the Livestock Rings, the Farming Experience section was dedicated to the production of wool and wool-related products.
Royal Three Counties Show will take place next summer 14-16 June 2024 at Three Counties Showground, Malvern.